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Banana Cake with Salted Caramel and PB Buttercream

Banana Cake with Salted Caramel and Peanut Butter Buttercream

Moist, fluffy and full of flavor banana cake layered with salted caramel and creamy peanut butter Swiss meringue buttercream, topped with salted caramel and salted, roasted peanuts.
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Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 45 minutes
Course Dessert
Servings 3 8" or 9" cake layers


Banana Cake

  • 3 ¼ cups (390g) all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups (396g) granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup (227g) sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 6 medium bananas

Salted Caramel

  • 1 cup (198g) granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • 6 tablespoons (85g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup (114g) heavy cream, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt

Peanut Butter Swiss Meringue Buttercream


Make the banana cake layers

  • Preheat the oven to 350F. Prepare your cake pans. Brush the bottoms and sides of your cake pans with melted butter. Line the bottoms and sides with parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl, finely mash the bananas and set aside.
  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda and salt and whisk to combine.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the butter and sugar and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5-7 minutes.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, scraping the bowl after each addition. Beat in the vanilla.
  • Add in the flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the sour cream, stopping to scrape the bowl after each addition.
  • Add the bananas and beat until just combined.
  • Divide the batter into the prepared baking pans. Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few cooked crumbs. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
  • Run a palette or butter knife around the cakes in their pans before turning them out to cool completely on cooling racks.
  • Wrap the cooled cakes in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator a couple hours to firm up.

Make the salted caramel

  • In a medium sized saucepan, combine the sugar and the water. Swirl the pan to moisten the sugar.
  • Place the saucepan over medium heat. Let the sugar mixture cook, without stirring, until the sugar mixture turns a rich amber color. Take the mixture off the heat to stop the cooking process.
  • Add the butter to the saucepan and whisk to combine. Be very careful as the mixture is incredibly hot and will bubble up and steam when the butter is added. 
  • Whisk in the heavy cream, followed by the vanilla and the salt until smooth.
  • Let the caramel cool in the pan for 10 minutes before transferring to a glass jar to cool completely.

Make the peanut butter buttercream

  • Mix the peanut butter into the prepared Swiss meringue buttercream. Add ½ cup/4oz at a time, to ensure the peanut butter gets thoroughly mixed into the buttercream.

Assemble the cake

  • Work with chilled cake layers. Using a serrated knife, cut off the domes (if any) of the cake.
  • Fit a piping bag with a large round tip ( I use an Ateco 808), and fill with peanut butter buttercream.
  • Put one of the cake layers, cut side up onto an 8" cake board or directly onto a cake stand.
  • Spread a thin, even layer of the buttercream on the cake layer with an offset spatula.
  • Pipe a dam around the edge of the cake to prevent the salted caramel from spilling over the sides of the cake.
  • Pipe buttercream over the salted caramel, creating a ¼" layer of buttercream.
  • Add the second cake layer and repeat with the salted caramel and buttercream. Place the third and final layer on top, and frost the outside and top of the cake.
  • Decorate with roasted, salted peanuts and salted caramel drizzle.
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